Seahawks' Top QB Targets in NFL Draft, Free Agency If Russell Wilson Is Traded

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistMarch 3, 2021

Seahawks' Top QB Targets in NFL Draft, Free Agency If Russell Wilson Is Traded

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    Stephen Brashear/Associated Press

    The worst-case scenario for the Seattle Seahawks this offseason is to lose Russell Wilson through a trade. 

    According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Wilson "has not demanded a trade." However, if the quarterback was dealt, there is a list of four preferred franchises he would go to. 

    The Dallas Cowboys, New Orleans Saints, Las Vegas Raiders and Chicago Bears all do not have enough draft capital in 2021 for the Seahawks to use on a first-round quarterback.

    Dallas has the highest first-pound pick of the quartet at No. 10, but given how much the quarterback position is valued, Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields, Trey Lance and Zach Wilson could all be off the board by the time that picks comes up. 

    The draft situation would be even worse if New Orleans, Las Vegas or Chicago traded for Wilson. The Raiders have the highest selection of the trio at No. 17. 

    Even though any trade package for Wilson would command a large return, the 2020 first-round pick may not be enough to get the Seahawks their quarterback of the future.

    With that in mind, the Seahawks should peruse the free-agent quarterback market for short- and long-term answers, as well as look at the second tier of signal-callers in the draft class.

Jameis Winston

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    Brynn Anderson/Associated Press

    If Wilson were dealt to the Saints, it would render Jameis Winston useless to the NFC South side. 

    At the moment, Winston makes the most sense as Drew Brees' potential replacement because of his familiarity with the system and experience as a starter in the NFL

    Even if Seattle deals Wilson to any of the other potential suitors, it should make a run at Winston, who is the top free-agent quarterback on the market. 

    Winston is a year removed from a 5,000-yard season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, so he can put up high numbers in the right system.

    However, the biggest question with Winston is his interception issues. He was picked off 30 times in 2019 and threw 14 or more interceptions in four of his five years as a starter. 

    If he cuts down on the turnovers, Winston could be coveted by any team with a need at the position and a low first-round draft pick. 

    If Seattle wants to go the veteran route, Winston would be the better option over Cam Newton, who had some mobility and arm strength issues in his one-year stint with the New England Patriots. Winston is also four years younger than Newton, so that would allow Seattle to take advantage of his prime years. 

Jamie Newman

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    Matthew Hinton/Associated Press

    Jamie Newman presents one of the most difficult evaluations of the 2021 draft class. 

    The former Wake Forest star was slated to be the starter at Georgia, but then he opted out of the 2020 season. 

    Instead of using one year in the SEC as a springboard to a high draft pick, Newman is mired in the second tier of players at his position behind Lawrence, Fields, Wilson, Lance and Mac Jones. 

    Newman could be a perfect fit in Seattle because he has a similar profile as Wilson. In his last season at Wake, he produced 26 passing touchdowns and six rushing scores. 

    Over three seasons in the ACC, Newman increased his rushing output and finished 2019 with 574 yards off 180 carries. He also had 2,868 passing yards in that campaign. 

    Newman's dual-threat ability would make him an easier player to fit into Seattle's system compared to Kyle Trask or any of the other second-tier signal-callers. 

    While a first-round pick may be a bit high to use on Newman, he would likely be one of the best available players for Seattle to take if it trades with the Raiders, Saints or Bears. 

Kyle Trask

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    Michael Ainsworth/Associated Press

    If the Seahawks land a mid-to-late first-round pick as part of a trade haul for Wilson, they would have to compare Newman, Trask and a few others left on their draft board. 

    Trask rose to prominence with a 4.283-yard season as the Florida Gators came a few games short of winning the SEC title. 

    It has to be noted that Trask was surrounded with plenty of talent in his senior season, including potential top-10 pick Kyle Pitts. 

    If Trask is placed in the right situation, he could achieve a similar level of success. In Seattle, he would get to work with DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett right away. 

    Trask is not expected to land in the top 15 selections, so that would lead to him being available if the Seahawks deal with the Saints, Bears or Raiders. 

    The Florida senior was fairly accurate with only 15 interceptions in his two seasons as a starter, but he did take 42 sacks in that span.

    If Seattle shores up its offensive line ahead of Trask's arrival, it could allow him to achieve success off the bat with some talented wideouts around him.

         

    Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90.

    Statistics obtained from Pro Football Reference and ESPN.com.